Photographer plans mass nude Dead Sea shoot
JERUSALEM — American art photographer Spencer Tunick is seeking funds and models for one of his trademark mass shoots of naked volunteers, this time at Israel's Dead Sea shoreline.
A statement from online art fundraiser Kickstarter.com said that the goal was to raise $60,000 by June 6 to fund the project entitled "Naked Sea."
Some of Tunick's previous shoots included one of 18,000 nudes in Mexico City's Zocalo Square and another of 7,000 in Barcelona, Spain.
Kickstarter said that Tunick had been motivated to try the Dead Sea, the lowest point on earth, because of its natural beauty and to draw attention to the danger to its future caused by evaporation of its salt-saturated waters.
"This project is dear to me, one that I have dreamed of since my early days as an artist," Tunick wrote in the statement.
"I look forward to your support in exposing a part of Israel that has not been seen before and at the same time bring attention to the deteriorating situation of the the Dead Sea."
Experts have repeatedly warned that the Dead Sea could dry out by 2050 unless vital measures are taken to halt the decay of the world's lowest and saltiest body of water, experts say.
The surface level is plunging by a metre (three feet) a year and the shoreline has receded by more than a kilometre (around a mile) in some places, according to some calculations.
Both Israel and Jordan are exploiting the Dead Sea tourist trade, with luxury hotels on either shore.Both have also set up massive evaporation pools that harvest Dead Sea minerals like potash, or potassium carbonate, used to produce soap, glass, baking soda and fertilisers.
For centuries, the sea's delicate balance was maintained by the Jordan river, its only year-round water source. But in recent decades Israel and Jordan have been diverting its waters into large irrigation projects.
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